Empiric adds Hahnemann Building to portfolio

Student accommodation business Empiric has exchanged contracts to buy the grade 2-listed building on Liverpool’s Hope Street for £10.8m.

The building, originally Liverpool Hahnemann Hospital, was converted into student accommodation after previous owner Maghull Developments secured consent for a Falconer Chester Hall-designed scheme in October 2013.

Operational from the start of the 2016-2017 academic year, it comprises 98 studio apartments and communal space and was fully let in its first year, under the management of CRM.

Hello Student will take over management once Empiric’s purchase is completed in October, marketing the building alongside Empiric’s six other Liverpool assets.

Paul Hadaway, chief executive of Empiric Student Property, said that international students remain central to the group’s thinking: “The Hahnemann Building is our seventh acquisition in Liverpool, expanding the group’s presence in the city to 480 beds.

“The University of Liverpool attracts 32% of its full-time students from international backgrounds, and has experienced strong international and postgraduate growth in recent years. This acquisition is in line with Empiric’s investment criteria and returns profile.”

Maghull acquired the Hahnemann Building as part of a portfolio of Hope Street heritage buildings bought from Liverpool John Moores University in 2007, which also included Josephine Butler House, 68 Hope Street and 2 Blackburne Place. Within that portfolio, the Hahnemann’s sale price was thought to be £2.2m.

The local developer originally envisaged the building as a boutique hotel, winning consent for a 50-bedroom hotel in 2009.

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Personally, I have no issues with student accommodation in the city centre….but, this building – in this location – as student digs, is a MASSIVE waste.

By Job Bob

Stunning building which will be transferred into another student block..what a lack of imagination! There is a plethora of student accommodation in Liverpool and this use would not be allowed in any other city….it’s either tall residential blocks in odd locations or student accommodation blocks…hardly going to transform the city’s investment appeal to major global businesses.

By sb

Agree with all the comments what an absolutely stunning building in a great location! Such a shame it could not have been made into a boutique hotel.

By Mary Smiley

What’s happening to Liverpool’s various assets ought to be a national issue, but you don’t hear anything about this from its leadership.

I suppose on the ground people there see construction going on and they are fooled into thinking everything’s going swimmingly. It’s not as if they’re going to hear anything different.

When cities are left with mountains of studio flats (a grand name for having one room to live in) and nothing but unemployed people to fill them, I think that we will come to regret this era.

Buildings like the above becoming student accommodation just show up what’s going on more starkly. If a building like this in the middle of one of the country’s biggest and best cities can cost-effectively end up being used like this then something clearly isn’t working in that city’s economy.

No politician at any level has any right to shrug at that, they need to step in and fix it.

By Mike

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